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Taxing Indian Casinos

October 04, 2003

In a television ad, Arnold Schwarzenegger attacks his opponents for pandering to the Indians and not taxing their casinos. "I don't play that game," he declares, implying that he will target the Indians to raise the additional revenues the state needs.

But he doesn't go far enough. He can really stick it to the Indians. Why not drive them off their land, destroy their culture, eliminate the sources of their livelihood and confine them on reservations? Oh, wait a minute. We already did that, didn't we? Must have been while we were pandering to them.

Morris Schorr

Woodland Hills


Schwarzenegger is attacking California Indians for not paying taxes on casino earnings. He should check his dictionary for the meaning of the word "sovereign." After stripping Indians of their lands and means of survival, and after a state policy of paying for dead Indians, the only thing with which they were left was their sovereignty.

At last they have found a way to take care of their people themselves and they deserve to keep every penny they earn on casinos as their sovereign right.

Lois Saffian

Los Angeles


I've heard quite enough about how the Native Americans deserve special privileges for the losses they suffered at the hands of the conquering Americans. Granted, my family wasn't here, but I certainly understand the inhumanity and horror of such a campaign. Every nation on Earth has been conquered at one time or another and the resulting loss of life and property is immeasurable. Only in America are we expected to pay for the sins of the father.

My forefathers did not kill or steal from the Native Americans nor did we enslave African Americans, and there are millions of other American citizens who did nothing of the sort either.

We are one nation now, one people. They have certain lands already given to them. I am not here to argue the value of these lands. I am here to say that if you want to do business in America, as an American, then you must contribute to our society.

There are untold millions lost in casinos by people who cannot afford it; many are fighting an addiction. By the logic the tribes are exercising, they should be reimbursing all the people their casinos take advantage of. When they do that, they will deserve tax-exempt status, and not until then.

Kurt Johnson


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